Mary Tyler Moore and Dick Van Dyke, on the set of the Rachael Ray Show, May 5, 2011
RACHAEL RAY/David M. Russell
Mary Tyler Moore has elected to undergo surgery to remove a meningioma
, a benign tumor of the lining tissue of the brain, her rep tells PEOPLE exclusively.
"At the recommendation of her neurologist, who has been monitoring this for years, and a neurosurgeon, Mary decided to proceed with this fairly routine procedure," says the rep.
The veteran star – who in the '60s as Laura Petrie on the The Dick Van Dyke Show
was TV's first sexy suburban housewife, and then in the '70s as Mary Richards on The Mary Tyler Moore Show
was the prototypical single career woman – most recently did a guest spot opposite her friend (and MTM Show
costar) Betty White on the season premiere of Hot in Cleveland
In March, Moore, 73, appeared in Vanity Fair
's annual Hollywood Issue, marking the 30th anniversary of the movie Ordinary People
, for which she was Oscar-nominated for her role
as the icy mother, by reuniting with its cast and director Robert Redford.
On Thursday's Rachael Ray Show
, which was taped on May 5, Moore makes a surprise appearance during an interview with her friend and former costar Dick Van Dyke.